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Agena B Gallery


The sign accompanying the Agena-B. It reads

Agena-B Upper Stage

The Agena-B upper stage was used during the 1960s as an orbital injection vehicle for Midas and other satellites and as an intermediate stage booster for Ranger and early Mariner space probes. It was fitted on Thor or Atlas-D launch vehicles, which then became known as Thor-Agena and Atlas-Agena.

Most notably, the Agena-B also served from 1960 to 1963 as the Corona photoreconnaissance satellite, which flew under the cover name Discoverer. The Agena-B used a restartable and gimballed liquid-fuel rocket engine made by the Bell Aerospace Company. On one side, through the window toward the front, you can see one of the Agena's Earth-sky horizon infrared scanners. This cylindrical optical device kept the vehicle on the right flight path in relation to the horizon.

Transferred from the U.S. Air Force

Length:7.2 m (23 ft. 10 in.)
Width:1.5 m (5 ft.)
Thrust:70,400 N (16,000 lb)
Propellants:nitric acid and UDMH (unsymmetrical dimethyl hydrazine)
Manufacturer:Lockheed Missiles and Space Co.

Agena B at Udvar-Hazy Center
Time picture taken Mon Jun 18 14:27:24 2007
Location picture taken Ground Level
James S. McDonnell Space Hangar
Udvar Hazy Center
Chantilly, VA
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